PEOPLE living in a flood-hit Hereford street are asking for answers after the river Wye peaked well below Environment Agency estimates at the weekend.

Greyfriars Avenue, which has flooded several times in recent years, was again hit by floods on Friday (January 13) as the river Wye rose to a peak of 5.34m.

Houses in the street were flooded as some installed pumps failed, with flood warden Colin Taylor, who also lives in the street, visiting neighbours and handing out emergency pumps on Friday morning.

The street had only had limited warning that flooding was on the way, with Mr Taylor explaining on Friday that, due to a fault with the Environment Agency's warning system, they had not been informed that serious flooding was again on the way until 11am on Thursday (January 12).

With more rain in Wales, and a Met Office weather warning issued for Wales and Herefordshire, locals were left fearing the worst. 

The river was again predicted to rise, this time to near its record, on Sunday, with the Environment Agency issuing a prediction that it would reach between 5.5m and 6m at the Old Bridge in Hereford on January 14.

Hereford Times: The predicted peak for the Wye at the Old Bridge was 5.5m to 6mThe predicted peak for the Wye at the Old Bridge was 5.5m to 6m (Image: Environment Agency)

"This is a guide as forecasts can change," the Environment Agency said at the time.

The Wye flows through Wales before reaching Hereford, meaning heavy rain to the west of the county can have a major effect on the river.


But the river in fact peaked at the Old Bridge at 4.74m at 8am on January 15, well below Friday's peak.

A spokesperson for Greyfriars Flood Group posted on social media this morning that they were relieved the river had not reached the predicted peak on Sunday, which could have seen it rise to just below the all-time record of 6.11m, reached in February 2020, but that they were seeking answers as to why it was so far off.

"Such a relief for Greyfriars’ community that this week’s second River Wye peak not as high as first," they said.

"Joy in fact. Still need to understand why levels were over-estimated so grossly by EA and a statement requested to explain this to the community."

There has been limited information available from the Environment Agency throughout the recent floods, with industrial action meaning that the flood warning system was automated.

Want to stay up to date with all the latest news for your local area? It's easy, just sign up for our weekly email newsletter here and all the important stories that matter to you will be delivered straight to your inbox.